I had been watching Mark Haines on CNBC for 17 years before I became a contributor and had a chance to go on-air with Mark.
I had conducted press briefings from the White House, from US Treasury, I had done countless network and cable interviews, but I was never more worried about saying something stupid than when I did my first interview with Mark Haines!
After watching him for all those years, I just knew that if I said something foolish Mark would make sure I and all the viewers knew it! I got through that interview OK — it was a great test I felt I passed — and always looked forward to doing more.
I don't know what it will be like for the first time in twenty years to not hear Mark's no-nonsense, smart, funny, patriotic voice in the background.
He will be sorely missed.
I want to send my most heartfelt condolences to Mark's family at home and to his family at Englewood Cliffs.
Tony Fratto, is a Managing Partner at Hamilton Place Strategies, former Assistant Secretary at the U.S. Treasury Department, and a former White House official.